Tag: "Mass Readings"

Render unto Caesar
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Render unto Caesar

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Despite their flattering words, they were trying to trap him, to force him into a no win situation. Consider the circumstances.  They are living under the iron boot of a brutal empire which filled the earth with its idolatry.  Patriotic Jews longed to throw off the tyrants’ yoke.  They prayed for an anointed king who […]

Reflections for Sunday, October 19, 2014
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Reflections for Sunday, October 19, 2014

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion (Isaiah 45:1,4-6; Psalm 96:1,3-5,7-10; 1 Thessalonians 1:1-5; Matthew 22:15-21) Moving Forward in Faith through God’s Open Doors Thus says the Lord to his anointed … opening doors before him and leaving the gates unbarred. (Isaiah 45:1) “A new door will open for you today.” Have you ever […]

The Sneakiest of the Seven Deadly Sins
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The Sneakiest of the Seven Deadly Sins

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At age 16, life was about rock ‘n roll. If my own band was not performing on Saturday night, I was out in the audience, watching another band. It would have never occurred to me to spend my Saturday nights at a Catholic conference or retreat. True, no matter how late I was out, I’d […]

Imitation of the Saints
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Imitation of the Saints

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One aspect of the Catholic religion that many non-Catholics don’t understand is our devotion to the saints.  Many of our ‘separated brethren’ can’t comprehend our veneration of the Roman Church’s holiest members.  Some think that we worship them and regard us as idolaters.  This isn’t true: we believe in one God which we profess every […]

Peace and Security
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Peace and Security

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A few years ago, I toured northern England.  There, stretching 73 miles from coast to coast, the Roman Emperor Hadrian built a massive wall.  Constructed of stone, it was built to last, since it marked the northernmost boundary of the greatest empire the world had ever known.  Soldiers from every corner of the world were […]

Reflections for Sunday, October 5, 2014
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Reflections for Sunday, October 5, 2014

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion (Isaiah 5:1-7; Psalm 80:9,12-16,19-20; Philippians 4:6-9; Matthew 21:33-43) Living Out Our Faith in Christ Think about these things. (Philippians 4:8) When you begin taking piano lessons, you begin by finding middle C. Then you learn how to read the notes on a page and how each note […]

St Paul:  Building Bridges, Not Fences
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St Paul: Building Bridges, Not Fences

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Following my ordination my bishop assigned me to work in two yoked parishes.  “Yoked” churches share a pastoral staff but are not merged.  The pastor and myself worked to merge the parishes. One parish was Irish.  The other was Puerto Rican.  The linguistic and traditional differences were palpable.  Often I reflected on the sixth chapter […]

Talk is Cheap
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Talk is Cheap

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There will never be a shortage of words.  Words are plentiful because talk is cheap.  It’s easy to make a promise.  Keeping a promise is an entirely different matter, as this Sunday’s gospel makes abundantly clear. There are over a billion people on the planet who have solemnly promised to live a life of loving […]

Reflections for Sunday, September 28, 2014
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Reflections for Sunday, September 28, 2014

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion (Ezekiel 18:25-28; Psalm 25:4-9; Philippians 2:1-11; Matthew 21:28-32) Living a Life in the Spirit as Jesus’ Disciple Regard others as more important than yourselves. (Philippians 2:3) We live in a world that urges us to think in modules. We have a module for church and prayer. We […]

St. Paul:  Dying to Live
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St. Paul: Dying to Live

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Saint Paul wrote his letter to the Philippians about a year before he died in prison at Rome.  In the letter he states concisely what he believes the human heart most longs for, that is, the meaning of life: “For to me life is Christ, and death is gain.” Paul wasn’t suicidal but he did […]

The Generosity of God
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The Generosity of God

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“But that’s not fair!”  Most parents have heard this phrase umpteen times.  The notion of fairness, also known as justice, is wired into us.  It makes us aware that each of us has certain rights that need to be respected. But it also means that we each have duties.  If others have the right to […]

The Greatest Love of All
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The Greatest Love of All

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“Love never fails” (1 Corinthians 13:8). St. Paul’s love discourse is most associated with matrimonial love because it speaks of love’s permanence. It’s often the selected reading at weddings because it teaches the betrothed how to give of themselves and resolve differences by means of the greatest spiritual gifts: faith, hope and love. But since […]

The Cross of Jeremiah
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The Cross of Jeremiah

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Jeremiah was the loneliest and saddest of the prophets but he was one of the greatest.  He was a descendant of Eli, the priest who taught the prophet Samuel.  Jeremiah did not want to be a prophet.  “I know not how to speak,” he told God.  His oracles reveal a sensitive man and the prophetic […]

Peter as Satan
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Peter as Satan

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Truth in advertising–after all the glowing reports of the benefits of a product, potential side effects need to be mentioned.  Informed consent–before surgery, patients have to be told of all the things that could possibly go wrong.  That way, they have the chance to opt out before it’s too late. As soon had the truth […]

The Sower and the Seed
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The Sower and the Seed

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I’ve always loved gardening.  Seeds I’ve planted include carrot, cucumber, and of course, zucchini.  In each case, I’ve planted seeds in neat rows, expecting nearly all of them to sprout and yield fruit. But the farmer in Jesus’ parable (Mat 13:1-23) uses the broadcast method.  Lots of seed cast everywhere.  And predictably, many of these […]

The Feast of Sts. Peter & Paul
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The Feast of Sts. Peter & Paul

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“Self” Magazine is certainly a sign of the times. This is an age when it is socially acceptable to admit that life is all about me. But selfishness is nothing new. Ever since Eve bit into the apple, human beings have made the choice to dethrone God and put in His place the unholy trinity […]

Trinity Sunday:  Is it Relevant?
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Trinity Sunday: Is it Relevant?

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Many are ready to give a polite nod of some sort to Jesus of Nazareth. Most honor him as a great moral teacher. Many even confess him as Savior. But the Incarnation of the Eternal God? Second person of the Holy Trinity? God can’t be one and three at the same time. Such a notion […]

Why The Ascension Matters
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Why The Ascension Matters

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The celebration of the Ascension used to leave me a bit flat.  It was clear what Good Friday did for me.  And Easter Sunday’s benefits were indisputable.  But as for the Ascension, what’s in it for me? Christianity is about a kind of love we call agape or charity.  It is love that looks away […]

Taking Up Our Cross
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Taking Up Our Cross

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A reflection  on the Responsorial Psalm for today (PS 1:1-2, 3, 4 AND 6) and the Gospel (LK 9:22-25) Jesus said to his disciples: “The Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised.” Next to the […]

God and Mammon?
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God and Mammon?

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In the ancient world, most peoples believed in a universe populated by many gods. However, even without the help of biblical revelation, Greek philosophers figured something out. There could only be one Supreme Being, only one almighty and omnipotent Ruler of all, only one God. In the twelfth chapter of Luke, Jesus asks a question. […]

The Call of the First Disciples
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The Call of the First Disciples

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Stop me if you’ve heard this one:  A lawyer, a cop, and a journalist enter Blessed John XXIII Seminary together. The lawyer ends up leaving to resume his practice but the cop and the journalist get ordained.  Two out of three isn’t bad.  You can take the man out of the law but you can’t […]

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